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A Soldiers Story

When Charles Boynton became our patient just over a month ago, I was instantly moved by his story.


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A Soldiers Story

When Charles Boynton became our patient just over a month ago, I was instantly moved by his story. Because our local office is a We Honor Veterans organization, it is our mission to recognize the unique needs of Veterans and their families, in conjunction with community partners and partnerships with VA staff, to learn how to accompany and guide them through their life stories toward a more peaceful ending.

(photos of Charles Boynton during enlistment)

While speaking with Charles Boynton about his service, he informed me that he was one of eight surviving soldiers out of 250 that had been dropped off in Normandy on that historical day. The water red with blood, Boynton informed me that it took only 14 hours for the two hundred and some odd soldiers to lose their life. When I asked him if he had earned any medals, he became emotional and said, “yes, but they were stolen from me.” When I asked Mr. Boynton’s daughter about the medals, she told me that her daughter had applied to receive them, and that they were suppose to arrive in January or February of next year. She also stated that they wanted to surprise Mr. Boynton with them. Concerned that the medals would not make it before he would circum to his terminal illness, I along with Lindsey Coppens of Still Servings Veterans, a community partner, took to the phone and email in an effort to get the medals delivered sooner.

(medals that were specially ordered for Boynton)

After several failed attempts to reach anyone, we were finally directed to contact the Army TACOM Medal Department. When I contacted them, I left a message stating the purpose of the call, and my frustration with the situation. Later that day, I received a call from Tina, their representative, who immediately went into action and informed me that the medals would arrive the following week. The next morning I received another call from the Army TACOM Medal Department, informing me that the medals were being shipped over night, and that the family would have them the following day.

Colonial William Webb (right) and Charles Boynton (middle)

Well… I’m happy to report, that the medals have arrived as promised, and the family is overjoyed. The President and Veteran Colonial William Webb presented Charles Boynton with his medals, as Gentiva staff, Lindsey Coppens of Still Serving Veterans and family looked on. This is just an example of what an amazing place Huntsville AL is, and Gentiva Hospices support and commitment to our Veterans. It is also a shining example of Hospice and VA partners working together to make a very special wish come true.

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